This week on IFC News:
Matt Singer meditates at length on a film that has haunted him in a white whale fashion for much of his still somewhat nascent career. The film is 1985’s "Gymkata." The DVD comes out tomorrow:
As [Roger] Ebert noted, it’s difficult to categorize "Gymkata" in simple good or bad terms. By any standard definition, the film is terrible. The acting is amateurish, the story confusing when it’s not altogether incoherent, and the dialogue often sounds like it was written by a computer program designed to string together random words into sentences. But anyone who has seen "Gymkata" cannot deny that it also holds a strange sway over the viewer; it’s bad, but not painfully bad. In fact, it’s one of those movies that is so utterly misguided it’s almost pleasurable to watch. And it’s an easy to movie to watch again, and again. I’d estimate I’ve seen in nearly two dozen times in the last decade.
IFC News‘ collected Sundance coverage is here; that includes the video podcasts (eight of them to date), our own blog mutterings, and Michael Scasserra‘s coverage â€” he’s reviewed various films we have not, including "Crazy Love," "Fido" and "Teeth."
It’s a messy movie, and Judge‘s low budget sometimes forces him to cut corners. But it should be seen and kudoed just for its principled stance against the cretinism most American entertainment happily exploits. Ah, if only the Bush-voting, war-mongering, "American Idol"-hypnotized, "Wheel of Fortune"-challenged, book-allergic, super-sized, Velveeta-slurping wrestling-&-Toby Keith devotees out there would see "Idiocracy" and take the slap in the face like grown-ups.
Mmm, Velveeta. Finally, over at the podcast, we look back wearily, fondly and with a 101 degree fever at Sundance, 2007.